Cricket Player Manager
Results 1 to 8 of 8

Thread: "Building" a Fast Bowler - A Coaching Challenge

  1. #1
    Cricket Web Staff Member / Global Moderator Neil Pickup's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Oxford, England
    Posts
    26,876

    "Building" a Fast Bowler - A Coaching Challenge

    Evening all,

    One of the best things about working at the particular stage of education as I do is the opportunity to have a real, lasting impact on a child's life - making a real difference, to speak in cliché, whether academic or otherwise. From time to time the scenarios come along when you're in the right place at the right time to set something in motion that could be really special.

    I have the feeling that I'm at one of those junctures now. Next term, I'm going to be working one-to-one with a boy who I think - biomechanically, at least, has the potential to be a seriously good fast bowler. He is, at nine years old, probably 5' plus and last year broke both the U10 and U11 school records for the 100m sprint (13.2). He has also played only a very little amount of cricket, so hopefully has very few bad habits that will hinder the process.

    My thoughts at the moment are to start with coil/load-up/gather, really looking for balanced power positions in the delivery stride leading into a strong and direct follow through, before working back into building a run-up... but I must confess not to having tried a full-on "action build" with a bowler before. I've done it with 'keepers, when I go from technique in the crouch first and extend from there, but with a bowler, typically, you're tweaking an established action.

    Does anyone else have any experience of this kind of work (no Atul Sharma jokes, please), or any ideas for drills other than walk-throughs and similar to keep things varied?
    MSN Messenger: minardineil2000 at hotmail dot com | AAAS Chairman
    CricketWeb Black | CricketWeb XI Captain
    ClarkeWatch: We're Watching Rikki - Are You?

    Up The Grecians - Exeter City FC

    Completing the Square: My Cricket Web Blog

  2. #2
    Cricket Web Staff Member Woodster's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Manchester, England
    Posts
    5,521
    Quote Originally Posted by Neil Pickup View Post
    Evening all,

    One of the best things about working at the particular stage of education as I do is the opportunity to have a real, lasting impact on a child's life - making a real difference, to speak in cliché, whether academic or otherwise. From time to time the scenarios come along when you're in the right place at the right time to set something in motion that could be really special.

    I have the feeling that I'm at one of those junctures now. Next term, I'm going to be working one-to-one with a boy who I think - biomechanically, at least, has the potential to be a seriously good fast bowler. He is, at nine years old, probably 5' plus and last year broke both the U10 and U11 school records for the 100m sprint (13.2). He has also played only a very little amount of cricket, so hopefully has very few bad habits that will hinder the process.

    My thoughts at the moment are to start with coil/load-up/gather, really looking for balanced power positions in the delivery stride leading into a strong and direct follow through, before working back into building a run-up... but I must confess not to having tried a full-on "action build" with a bowler before. I've done it with 'keepers, when I go from technique in the crouch first and extend from there, but with a bowler, typically, you're tweaking an established action.

    Does anyone else have any experience of this kind of work (no Atul Sharma jokes, please), or any ideas for drills other than walk-throughs and similar to keep things varied?
    Sounds a potentially very rewarding challenge you have on your hands. To start from an almost blank canvas with a quick bowler I'm sure will be hard work for both of you, patience and time presumably will be vital. Think it's important not to try and cut corners in order to spped things up, and if he is to be an exceptional talent then clearly he must find it enjoyable, which is down to you naturally.

    Personally I have no prior knowledge of any in-depth coaching of a bowler with little or no current technique to speak of, but I will be genuinely interested in how you go about this. I'm hoping to take on more of a role with the elite juniors at my club next year, so obviously it'll be a case of tweaking their techniques if necessary, rather than what you're aiming to do.

    From what I understand, it is basically about introducing different stages of the bowling action and developing the whole action slowly and patiently. Starting with the feet position and wirking your way up before introducing the ball, then finally the run-up.

    As for drills, presume you'd just have to walk through the processes and repeat them till he has a good grasp of how it all works before you can expand and introduce more fun into the training.
    http://batallday.blogspot.com/ - Cricket blog dedicated to domestic cricket.

  3. #3
    Cricket Web Staff Member Woodster's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Manchester, England
    Posts
    5,521
    Just referred to my Bob Woolmer Art of Science and Cricket book, they stress the importance of getting the front leg as straight as possible during delivery. The more the front leg bends the more stress is imparted upon the back and spine muscles.

    It suggests that if you have steps near the field to bowl down them and get the youngster use to what it feels like to brace the front leg and bowl over it.

  4. #4
    Hall of Fame Member Goughy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    still scratching around in the same old hole
    Posts
    15,233
    eek, the idea of "building" a bowler is scary. Bowling is a natural thing and actions have to suit the individual.

    All the evidence suggests that the best way to develop quick bowlers is by them developing their actions organically. Ie give them the basics and they go out and bowl a lot and get a feel of what works for them. Then good coaches shape the bowler. Even very raw bowlers can be shaped but they need to develop some basic action first.

    The problem a lot of coaches have is that a) they don't really know what they are talking about and destroy young quicks b) they incorrectly try and apply a cookie cutter approach to bowling that ignores the needs of the athlete c) they look to develop the best possible player at a young age which doesnt necessarily allow for continued development and can stunt the bowler. By heavily coaching a young quick, a glass ceiling is placed on their potential.

    For young quicks, less is more.

    It does sound a potentially rewarding experience but please be careful. I say this not directed at you as a coach but based on years of watching coaches fail with quicks.
    If I only just posted the above post, please wait 5 mins before replying as there is bound to be edits

    West Robham Rabid Wolves Caedere lemma quod eat lemma

    Happy Birthday! (easier than using Birthday threads)

    Email and MSN- Goughy at cricketmail dot net


  5. #5
    Hall of Fame Member Son Of Coco's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Brisbane, Australia
    Posts
    17,229
    Yeah, was just thinking the same thing as Goughy. In fact, they mentioned something similar with Johnson somewhere the other day, and the general opinion was that young bowlers these days get too caught up in the mechanics of an action.

    As Goughy said, would let him work out an action that works for him first. The basic bowling action is a relatively simple thing. Then go from there.

    I'd never heard of the terms 'load', 'gather', and whatever else in reference to an action when I was younger. You just bowled.
    "What is this what is this who is this guy shouting what is this going on in here?" - CP. (re: psxpro)

    R.I.P Craigos, you were a champion bloke. One of the best

    R.I.P Fardin 'Bob' Qayyumi

    Member of the Church of the Holy Glenn McGrath

    "How about you do something contstructive in this forum for once and not fill the forum with ****. You offer nothing." - theegyptian.

  6. #6
    Hall of Fame Member Goughy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    still scratching around in the same old hole
    Posts
    15,233
    Ill use a few examples to illustrate my point.

    Cricket in the South African private school system is amazing but they can hardly produce quality quicks. Amazing batsman but no fast bowlers. Why? Well the reason is the intense coaching they get from the time they can walk. Years of structured coaching of boys in a result only environment leads to quicks being cut off at the knees before they have a chance to develop. If you look at the successful SA quicks of recent years, there is only Pollock who is a product of that system and his family background is hardly typical. Others came from the cricketing backwoods away from the prying eyes of coaches until they were already set. Donald came from a barefoot Afrikaans small town, Styen from a border province where cricket isnt a big deal and he was almost the only white face, Ntini was a cattle herder and Morkel came from small town blue collar Afrikaanerdom. The message is simple. Let kids develop away from pressure environments and then look to shave the rough edges off at 16 or so.

    The same, I believe is true, of WI cricket. Quicks were produced because they played away from coaches where they could run up and bowl without stressing too much about wides, results, and biometrics. As coaching has developed in WI so their stocks of quicks has been reduced.

    Of course players are still not immune when they hit their late teens. I have a friend from SA who bowled rapid. He played a few FC games and then was brought into the 'system.' The coaches tinkered with his action so much the within a year he had dropped pace, lost confidence and stopped bowling. A real tragedy.

    My main gripe is that coaches think they have to 'earn' their money and make far to many chages in order to justify their position and salary.

    Far too often coaches place a huge emphasis on winning games and develop players that can help them win right now. I see it from 8 years old on. The problem with that is that kids are coached in ways that dont allow a great deal of growth in the future and have conservative actions. Kids who are good quick bowlers at 10 are not very often good quick bowlers at 17. Their action isnt natural and they have little room to grow. Young guys that have actions that could develop into quick bowlers have that coached out of them.

    I didnt start playing cricket until I was about 14. Id barely ever picked a cricket ball up prior to that. I couldnt bowl straight and every 2nd ball hit the side of the net but immediately there was noone quicker than me in the district. Not starting early allowed me to reach adolecence without having my natural, raw action coached out of me. I credit my pace to NOT being a product of the system as much as I do to my own ability. My case is hardly unique either. Even then I was not immune to the meddling of coaches. I still missed a season after one person tried to rearrange my action.

    As Stan Lee said, with great power comes great responsibility and I think coaches often lose sight of this.

    Too often coaches look to create the best 10 yr old cricketer rather than look long term to think "what can I do to make this 10 yr old the best possible 18 yr old fast bowler"

    Neil, Im not ranting at you at all. This is directed at coaching in general. It is entirely possible that you will do an amazing job and that you will avoid all the potential pitfalls. Im just preaching caution as coaches are a young quick bowlers kryptonite. I guess what I am trying to say is that typically, fast bowlers are not created. They evolve and then are refined.

    Sincerely, good luck. As a coach, I know this will be an amazing and rewarding journey for you and the child.
    Last edited by Goughy; 18-12-2010 at 05:22 AM.

  7. #7
    Cricket Web Staff Member / Global Moderator Neil Pickup's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Oxford, England
    Posts
    26,876
    Thanks for replies, guys - just why I started the thread.

    I don't think "building" is the right word - that's posting at 11pm for you - it creates this horrible image of creating an identikit fast bowler out of a box. You're dead right; that can't be what it's about. I think the focus should be to let the kids find the method that suits them, and to encourage them towards an action that's simple and repeatable.

  8. #8
    International Captain thierry henry's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Auckland, New Zealand
    Posts
    5,305
    Do you have any reason to believe this kid won't stop growing at 12 and end up 5'8" and running the 100m in 13.1 seconds? Genuine question, pretty tough to speculate on someone's physical potential when they're 9.



Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Similar Threads

  1. Battrick
    By James in forum Battrick
    Replies: 2450
    Last Post: 18-12-2012, 04:55 AM
  2. Fast bowler survival round of 16
    By stephen in forum Cricket Chat
    Replies: 126
    Last Post: 21-05-2010, 09:43 AM
  3. Fast bowler survival round 3
    By stephen in forum Cricket Chat
    Replies: 30
    Last Post: 15-05-2010, 08:14 PM
  4. Fast bowler survival - wildcard round
    By stephen in forum Cricket Chat
    Replies: 24
    Last Post: 11-05-2010, 09:56 AM
  5. my team
    By bugssy in forum Battrick
    Replies: 68
    Last Post: 18-04-2007, 07:00 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •